There are few better feelings for a guy who has to write every day than knowing that he doesn't have to write. Still, I feel a little guilty, so here's your quick Mariner news wrap-up:
-Richie Sexson's heel is sore, and in his own words, "it might be one of those things that lingers for a while." He then went on to say "I don't feel it when I swing," at which point everyone who had been listening stopped paying attention. Right now, I really couldn't give less of a hoot about Sexson's defense or baserunning. We're still waiting to hear our first official excuse for why his offense has fallen off the map, with "he's adjusting to a new league" no longer being a viable candidate and "maybe he just sucks" currently being used by someone else.
-from the same article, Raffy Chaves thinks he has the answer:
You'll know the superstition has caught on when they stop closing the Safeco roof when it rains during home games.
-remember when Shin-soo Choo was being pimped as the next big thing after catching fire out of the gate? His overall line is down to .281/.347/.401 in 192 AB's, with a pathetic .289 SLG against southpaws. While his strikeouts are down from where they were a year ago, so are his walks, and he's got zero power to speak of. Outside of a terrific arm, there's nothing special here. Move along.
-surprising exactly no one, George Sherrill is good, and he's finally starting to get noticed. For his career, he's allowed just 20 hits to left-handed batters in 120 AB's, with 42 strikeouts and only five walks. He's had his share of trouble with righties, but Hargrove's been able to protect him from those situations for the most part, with positive results. There is a very short list of guys I'd rather have on the mound to face Eric Chavez in a big situation.
-the current AL All-Star Game lineup would feature exactly one player who is neither a Yankee nor a Red Sox. That player is Vladimir Guerrero, who ranks 11th among AL outfielders in OPS. Alexis Rios, who's slugging .645 and leads the league in batting average, is nowhere to be found. Neither is Nick Swisher, who apparently isn't even listed on the ballot. Missing from the top five at their respective positions are Jose Lopez and Kenji Johjima, along with Yuniesky Betancourt, the last of which is surprising only when you consider that Juan Uribe's .208/.243/.333 batting line has been good enough to convince 121,304 complete retards(^) that he's the best shortstop in the AL. I suppose that, since the All-Star Game is meant for the fans, it really should be a popularity contest rather than a nine-inning exhibition of the best players in baseball, but still, geez, people are idiots.
(^-I'm assuming that these people are too stupid to realize they can vote more than once.)
-with 1420 on the season, the Mariners have made more outs than anyone else in baseball.
-Mariner pitchers have also allowed home runs on 15% of outfield flies, the second worst rate in the league (Toronto, 19%). This will come down over the course of the summer, and rather quickly if Felix ever discovers that his fingers are capable of aligning themselves in several different positions along the seams when throwing a baseball.
-as of 11:04pm PDT, Mike Hargrove still manages the M's.
-the Mariners are facing a lose-lose situation with this upcoming four-game set against Kansas City. A sweep means nothing - they're the Royals, for God's sake - but anything less than three wins will probably just about obliterate whatever's left of the fan base. Curse Allard Baird and David Glass for putting us in this position.
-7:05pm, tomorrow night. I won't blame you if you don't tune in.